Beyonce promotes George Floyd petition, says justice is ‘far from being achieved’
The Grammy Award-winning singer says 'we cannot normalize this pain'
The killing of George Floyd has inspired numerous statements from the most prominent names, public figures and artists of our time.
Beyoncé Knowles-Carter joined the fray in a late Friday night Instagram post, delivering her own feelings about the death of the 46-year-old Black man at the hands of Minneapolis police.
“We need justice for George Floyd. We all witnessed his murder in broad daylight. We’re broken and disgusted,” Beyoncé said in a message directed at white, Black and people of other races alike. “We cannot normalize this pain.”
The Grammy-winning performing artist recorded the video statement with the sounds of “So What” by jazz legend Miles Davis playing in the background. She sought to help rally people to “seek justice” by signing a petition to get the officers involved charged for his murder.
More than 7 million people have signed the petition so far.
Floyd died on Memorial Day this past Monday after Minneapolis police handcuffed and held him down in the street as one of those officers knelt on his neck for minutes. Floyd pleaded while in custody that he could not breathe, words that echoed the death of Eric Garner while he was being choked by a New York police officer in 2014.
Derek Chauvin, the officer that pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for more than 8 minutes as he lost consciousness, has since been arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter for his killing. The incident, the latest in a slew of video footage capturing police mistreatment over the years, has incited national protests that have sometimes turned violent.
“Yes, someone’s been charged, but justice is far from being achieved,” Beyoncé said. “No more senseless killings of human beings. No more seeing people of color as less than human.”
Beyoncé, who is married to billionaire rapper Jay-Z, said that not only Black people should be outraged and that everyone must rally to address such racist acts.
“I’m not only speaking to people of color,” she said. “If you’re white, Black, brown, or anything in between, I’m sure you feel hopeless by the racism going on in America right now.”
Jay-Z, whose entertainment and social justice partnership with the NFL divided the community in the wake of the league’s handling of Colin Kaepernick, has yet to speak publicly on the incident. The hip-hop figure’s social justice organization, Team Roc, however, most recently called for fast legal action in the murder of Ahmaud Arbery.
The case in Georiga has since been relegated to a backseat in media headlines since the death of Floyd, but the anger sparked by the incident can be heard and felt in the civil unrest that has taken root across the country.
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